Hemsky eyeing return… time for Oil to consider moving someone?

By , November 7, 2011 12:35 pm
Ales Hemsky could return to action during this road trip..

Ales Hemsky could return to action during this road trip..

Ales Hemsky took more involvement in practice today, per Joanne Ireland. Tom Renney has been saying for the last week or so that Hemsky could return to the lineup during this road trip, even. Without question, Hemsky’s contribution to the line up will be felt heavily with the team still struggling to score goals (luckily the goaltending/defense has been strong).

Having too many offensive forwards in our line up certainly isn’t a bad problem to have, but should the Oilers look at moving one of them? Ryan Jones’ rib injury (if it keeps him out of the line up) might stall things a bit, in addition to Ales Hemsky’s recovery time. However, the team should maybe think about moving one of their forward stock and bringing in a young d-man.

Linus Omark has already gone on record as saying that he will consider jumping ship for Europe if it looks like he’ll be in Oklahoma City for long. He would be a reasonable candidate in my eyes, despite being a favorite amongst the statistical bloggers. And while I do agree that there is a player here, I’m not sure I have the patience to find out. The guy is definitely strong on the puck and very creative. But the offense has not been there at all this year. He may still have good value around the league, and perhaps it would be a good time to move him (even though we likely won’t get 100 cents to the dollar here).

Sam Gagner is a popular suggestion among the fan base too. I can understand that suggestion as well.. it’s tough to really say for certain what he does better than Linus Omark. Omark is more stronger on the puck. Gagner has a better head on his shoulders, however. He also might think the game from the perspective of a line better than Omark (who is a bit more individual). However, his strength on the puck is questionable at best. I would have to say though that there is a very good 2nd line center (yes I’ve accepted his 2nd line center/winger status now… thanks to “the Nuge”) in there though. Once Hemsky is back, I’d really like to see a line of Smyth / Gagner / Hemsky, at least for a few games. I would hang on to Gagner.

Ryan Jones’ name hasn’t really been brought up. But should he be a consideration? He is the least talented (arguably) of our top-six forwards. And granted, he really only is a top-six forward because Hemsky is out. Does he help this line up more than a guy like Teemu Hartikainen would? I’d say yes. Yes in the sense that he provides a lot of character in the dressing room. This sort of thing goes unrespected amongst fans, but I believe it to be very important with a young team. I also think that some players we should take the long route with when it comes to development. A guy like Hartikainen will benefit more from top-six minutes in the AHL than he will with bottom-six minutes in the NHL.. for now. I wouldn’t consider Ryan Jones as a piece to move at this point.

Another name to trade or waive would be Darcy Hordichuk. I know this suggestion would seem as a great idea to many of you. I’m not on board with this idea just yet though. It might be a consideration one day.. but I’d still like to give him a chance to put his money where his mouth is.

So what about Ales Hemsky? His name gets thrown around a lot as a trade suggestion. Well, as much as I detest the fact that he is so often injured, I do realize that he has a big impact when in our lineup. I would not move him at all unless we’re getting a solid forward back. And really, that doesn’t make much sense that this kind of deal would happen. So I say we hang on to Hemsky. This team desperately needs some secondary scoring. Reuniting Smyth and Hemsky will add several goals. It will also allow us to put together a decent 3rd line.

The other option is just to stand pat. Move no one. It would require someone to be moved back to the AHL (ex. Lander), but it would keep all our players in the organization. Do we need to move a forward at all (whether it’s for the purpose of making room for some other forwards or to improve our back end which has been great on ice despite being bad on paper)?

Who would you move, if anyone?


Who (if anyone) would you trade once our team returns to health?

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7 Responses to “Hemsky eyeing return… time for Oil to consider moving someone?”

  1. Tapdog says:

    I can understand Hemsky adding goals to the Horcoff line Racki biut how does adding Jones to the 3rd line make it that much better?

    Myself in the short term, I would play Hemsky with Hall and RNH, move Eb’s with Paajarvi and Gagner, then play Omark with Horc and Smyth if Jones is going to miss a few games.

  2. Tapdog says:

    Hey I tried to register but did not receive an email as it says. Can someone clear it out because now it says the name is taken!

  3. Racki says:

    Hey Tapdog, I removed your user from here. Try registering again. Make sure to check any spam folders for the email. If it still doesn’t work, use the contact form and maybe we can figure another way to do it.

    As for Jones, I probably didn’t make it very clear…. I meant that Jones in the lineup is better for the team in that he’s a character guy and provides a bit of grit, leadership, and those sorts of intangibles… and affords us the ability to ensure Hartikainen develops properly in the AHL.

    I would say though that Hartikainen in his place probably is as good or better though, when it comes to stats. But I’d let him develop a bit more to help get the best player we can out of him (he’ll get more ice time in OKC for sure).

    Now Omark vs. Jones.. that’s another argument that I hadn’t gone into as far as who’d be better on line 3. I’m not too impressed with his comments of late though.

  4. hemmerlady says:

    Racki:

    As for Jones, I probably didn’t make it very clear…. I meant that Jones in the lineup is better for the team in that he’s a character guy and provides a bit of grit, leadership, and those sorts of intangibles… and affords us the ability to ensure Hartikainen develops properly in the AHL.

    I would say though that Hartikainen in his place probably is as good or better though, when it comes to stats. But I’d let him develop a bit more to help get the best player we can out of him (he’ll get more ice time in OKC for sure).

    I would agree with that, Jonesy contributes a lot as far as attitude, grit, energy, and I think those are super important for the team. I think if he keeps working hard the points will come.

    Now Omark vs. Jones.. that’s another argument that I hadn’t gone into as far as who’d be better on line 3. I’m not too impressed with his comments of late though.

    Yeah, I think that’s a big part of the concern about Omark…the attitude. I think his arrogance exceeds his skill sometimes.

  5. mrgod2u says:

    So far this season I have seen little from Omark to even justify the skill side of the equation at all. I mean we know it’s there, but no points and a -5 +/- is pretty inconsequential. That might go up on a better line but it also might bust up the defensive synergy that our top lines have going. Right now it is selfless play and never give up attitude that is winning us games. Khabbi is also a huge factor, but without our teams relentless puck pressure and sacrificing the body to stop the puck (yay Smid) I don’t think he would have the numbers either.
    I actually think that reuniting Hemsky Horcoff and Smyth might be something to try. They do know each others play styles, and that chemistry is something you have to work at when creating a new line. Getting it “pre-established” is a bonus.
    Bump Jones down to 3rd line and sit gags for a game see if the attitude is contagious, our 3rd line needs something to jump it up, and the flying mullet might do it.

    Much as I hate to say it, Gags and Omark are the clear “odd men out” right now. and might have good trade value to a team that is a lot more desperate to make a change than we are.

  6. dawgtoy says:

    Some tough decisions loom in regards to Hemsky. Management needs to see him stay healthy, and they need to have him commit on paper in regards to signing a new contract. IMO anything short of that Hemsky must be dealt and sooner would be more prudent then later. I’d rather see Hemsky stay, and the bigger ticket item in regards to trade value would be Gagner. He’s a center and still very young with a very reasonable price tag. Omark could help sweeten the deal if necesssary, providing the return is substantial and a RHD. Likely waiting to see how Hemsky is able to SHOULDER the load would be beneficial before making any type of trade. So I vote nobody. Moving Gagner back to center will give us a better indication of his future worth with the team as well. I never liked the decision to put him on the wing either.

  7. Alan-NottsUK says:

    I think Omark will be traded, he didn’t seem to buy in to the team plan at the start of the season and is clearly not considered a key part of this team when it’s all healthy.

    also I think at least one other forward will be gone at the deadline. And I could also see Hemsky being the one to go regardless of what position we are in, the closer to a play off spot the better value you get on his return as teams would have to overpay to take him off a team pushing for a spot. I said before the season I could see him in Washington at the deadline for Colorado’s 1st round pick +.

    The other option would be Gagner, and I think that comes down to how well he performs playing RW, if he starts to look strong there then his value in being able to play both C and RW would make him worth too much to the Oilers in terms of depth.

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